Thursday, October 14, 2010

Hate to say "I told you so"...

When I said it during the presidential elections - that I was not pro-Obama, because he was clearly not planning on doing anything to move gay rights along - his staunch supporters, in between bouts of gushing syrupy praise over their new Messiah, told me I was racist. After all, what reason other than the fact that Obama was black could I have for not LOVING him? I reminded them that, actually, Obama is of mixed race as, technically, so am I.

And then the elections were over and we had a new president. Hurrah! Even I was glad. Not because Obama was the living, breathing cure for AIDS that his blind fandom had painted him to be, but because he wasn't George W. Bush.

Time passed, and he did lots of things. Mostly good things. He even did a bunch of things he said he'd do if elected. He did nothing to promote same-sex marriage. Fair enough - that's exactly what he promised he'd do: NOTHING to support an idea he doesn't believe in. Even if he DID believe in it, once upon a time, not even that long ago. No surprises there; a politician changing his mind about an important issue in order to garner favor.

A couple of people I know, people who were staunch supporters of Obama...people who are gay, voiced their "disappointment" in him. How, I asked them, could they be disappointed in a man who had stated, in no uncertain terms, that marriage is for heterosexuals, only? How could they be angry and surprised that a man who would invite one of the nation's most vocal homophobes to deliver the inaugural invocation speech would end up to be less than a friend to his gay voters? How, I asked them, could they be so naive?

"He's doing a lot of good,"they'd answer, "He's still pretty amazing. Give him time. He just needs time. He'll come around. He's trying to bring people together."

How, I wondered, could smart people, people I liked and cared about and usually respected, have deluded themselves into believing that denying a whole sector of society our civil rights was a strategy for "bringing people together"? How did otherwise rational people convince themselves to still talk about their love for a president who did not even acknowledge as legitimate the love two people share for a lifetime, on account of their genders? How and why do smart people become stupid?

In October, I blogged about the hypocrisy of the whole "the world isn't ready...just wait" argument. I spoke about Del Martin, who died after 50 years of waiting for the world to be ready. Still, people I knew, people I liked, people I respected said to me, "But, the president is AWESOME. Just wait. you'll see. He's done a lot of good."

If we had a president who was denying women the vote, or blacks an education or Asians the right to work, I would not tolerate the stupid, naive, ignorant excuse-making of his supporters. Our president thinks its perfectly okay to let fags go to war -maybe even die defending this nation - as long as they keep their mouths shut about who they like to fuck. That is the long and short of it. This week's DOJ actions say it all. That's inexcusable. At worst, our president is a homophobe. At best he's a spineless coward.  Any gay person who defends Obama's lack of movement on the gay rights front can just call himself Uncle Tom: you're like a black person who thinks Rosa Parks was uppity and Dr. King had a big mouth. It feels dirty and obscene to even type those two examples, but they're the best and most accurate comparisons I can think of. If you're a gay person and you think other gays who refuse to support a president who continually denies us our civil rights are stirring up trouble or "don't understand what Obama is doing", you're a fucking idiot, and you should probably turn in your toaster.

And you know what? I FUCKING TOLD YOU SO.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Another week of Dribs and Drabs

The Girl With The Golden Arm

It pained me to see Mad Men's Midge - my favorite of all the women Don has bedded down over the years - end up a junkie. Of course, it's kind of ridiculous that Midge looks so damned good for a junkie so desperate that she's scrounging around looking for money for her next fix. Rosemary DeWitt is a hottie, and she's way too smart and talented to be on the dreadful United States of Tara. Yeah, send me emails defending that show, if you really have to but here's my story and I'm sticking to it: USOT is a badly written, over-acted, piece of crap. The talented Toni Collette should be ashamed to be involved with it. The wooden, getting-long-in-the-tooth- for-the-good-old-boy-thing John Corbett is lucky to have the work. But Rosemary DeWitt runs the risk of never getting the notice she deserves as long as she's with that clunker. She was a good , little foil for Don's ideas about family life in season one of Mad Men, and her brief return helped move this week's action along but, ultimately, she looked too damn healthy, happy, well-fed and rosy to be a junkie. 

The Notorious Gretchen Mol

Loving Boardwalk Empire but, um...does anyone believe Gretchen Mol could be Michael Pit's mother? Maybe his slightly older girlfriend, but his mother? I'm thinking she looks about ten years older than he does. 

Anyhow, it's good to see her. I loved her in the Notorious Bettie Page, and I think she didn't get nearly enough credit for her acting in it. 

Also: Kelly Macdonald - one of my quiet favorites, ever since Trainspotting. Margaret Schroeder schooling two know-it-all politicos about women's suffrage? Perfect. She's quiet possibly my favorite character on this show. Don't give up on your values, Margaret! 

Early Cuts

Ok, so this is old, but it's still pretty fucking cool. My good friend's brother, Kyle Baker, did the drawings for this. If Kyle's name is familiar, it's probably because he also authored the amazing graphic novels about Nat Turner. If you haven't read them, check them out. I keep meaning to get copies for my nephews. 


Back at the ranch, Dexter is getting a little sloppy, no? And is it just me, or is his nanny going to end up being some baby-shaking, madwoman who chops up infants and uses them to make Irish stew?

Baby Jessica is sooo '86

As I type this, 3 of the Chilean miners have been rescued, and there are 28 to go. Go, Chile! Like Mad Men's Midge, don't these guys look way too robust, fit and - to be honest - chunky, to have been down there for three months, eating nothing but a spoonful of tuna every 48 hours? I'm not saying this is a hoax, but I do wonder if there's not an underground tunnel that leads to a nice, little ceviche bar. Or, you know, maybe when all is said and done there will only be 20 more guys to pull up. Hey - I'm just saying...they look good.

Jokes made in poor taste aside - Viva Chile! If the footage of that first guy coming up and hugging his son didn't make your eyes well up, you're some sort of soulless bastard, and I feel sorry for you. 

Who Says Smart Girls Don't Fuck?

A happy accident found me in a bar that was also a Litquake Litcrawl venue this past weekend, listening to Lorelei Lee read from her novel-in-progress. Lee is a porn performer, NYU MFA student, and writer. A very promising writer. I'm looking forward to reading her novel, once it's published. This short film gives some insight into a young woman whose choices not only buck convention, but challenge pre-conceptions about women who choose to work in the sex industry. You've got to love that.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Dribs and Drabs

Mad Men

How well-written is Mad Men? It's so well-written that I find myself rooting for Joan and Roger to continue their adulterous flirtation/affair and live happily, ever after. Roger, played by the incredibly charismatic John Slattery, is only ever a real human being when he's talking to Joan. No one else stands up to him, or calls him on his shit. No one else seems to have the balls to tell him off. And Joan? No one really takes her seriously as a human being - and not just a femme fatale - but Roger. There's real love there, real friendship. Roger tells Joan things he would never, ever tell his ridiculous wife. Joan understands Roger in a way no one else can. Roger has respect for Joan - something her rapist-of-a-husband has never, shown. These two are gorgeous together in every way.


He's back. Holy shit, is he back. Dead wife. Grief. Guilt. And an epiphany: he can so love! Too soon to tell, but I'm psyched about this season. Ritualistic beheadings, Aster's teen agnst, the past always threatening to catch up with Dex, and the Florida sunshine. What could be better on a Sunday night?

Boardwalk Empire
Holy crap is this show a thing of beauty. Then again, it was a pretty safe bet: Scorsese + Buscemi + filmed mostly in Brooklyn. The writing is tight, the acting top-notch, the costumes and sets are amazing. It's just beautiful, on every level. Paz De la Huerta pretty much naked every week? That can't be too hard to swallow, either.


Tea's alive. Yeah, we knew that. The show has been a bit of a mess, lately. In some ways, unwatchable. However, the tide seems to be turning. Maybe the only actor I've really enjoyed watching lately: Kassie Depaiva. What can I say? I love Blair, and I really like that the writers have had her stand by her promise to Tea.

He gave us Wiseguy, dammit. And The Rockford Files.  And The A Team. And Tenspeed and Brownshoe, a show which I loved. Goodbye, SJC.

The Bay

So much hype - which actually made me suspicious that it would ALL be hype. It may be too soon to tell but, so far, I'm not really impressed. Well, that's not true...I AM impressed that they've seen fit to feature black characters from the get-go, not as fillers or servants, but actual characters involved in the action. And more than one. Other than that, there's not much here to make me watch, again.

For my money, Empire is still the only websoap delivering the goods. Season 3 is set to start November 9th, and I can't wait.

They Yearn for Earthly Pleasures...

I soooo want to go to this, but my Poltergeist cronies live in places like NY and Hawaii, and this is not the kind of thing one goes to alone.